As with everything else, the worship arts ministry and all the moving parts that make Sunday morning services possible had to significantly adapt to the new realities of pandemic life. We moved from fully prerecorded services last summer to a livestream in the fall, with periods of synchronous in-person and streamed services in mid-fall and this spring. As mentioned above, many thanks to Scott Halver, as well as Dan and Doug Tallacksen, Jonathan Lim, Josh Dekker, Phil Malinak, and Josiah Abbott for all their hard work running sound and video, rolling with the punches that technology always throws, and making streamed services possible! 

Moving to single-leader-led worship has been another pandemic adjustment the worship team has had to make. I know we’ve all been blessed by the ministry of Jonathan Lim, Natalia Leonard, Dan Addington and Josiah Haas as they’ve been using their gifts and helping lead our worship services solo–much thanks for all your service leading this past year! Thanks as well to all those on the worship team who have been unable to lead on Sunday mornings but have still prayed with and supported the worship arts ministry–while we’ve missed seeing familiar faces onstage, we look forward to continuing to add team members as safety allows. 

As the pandemic changed our process for in-person worship, our “Welcome Team” has repurposed as  “Safe Connections” team–much thanks to all who have been showing hospitality to all attendees on Sunday mornings while faithfully ensuring their health and wellness.

As you are all well aware, this has been the year of video! We were able to allow the rest of the worship team to help facilitate worship in our Advent and Easter “virtual choir” videos–thanks to all who participated and a special thanks to Jonathan for all the hard work compiling the videos and editing them into finished product. Another thanks to all who have taken the time and effort to record and send testimonies, missionary updates, and weekly announcements. They have blessed, taught, and kept First Free updated on what’s going on in the lives and ministry of the church. 

Regarding a few logistical updates, the church has updated our music license and acquired a church Spotify account in order to streamline pre- and post-service background music, and the band room has been organized, enabling service set-up and tear-down to go even more smoothly. 

It has been a privilege and honor to help steward this ministry for the past year. While First Free’s worship arts and in-person Sunday worship experience have all experienced much change in the past year, I know God will continue to be faithful and sustain this ministry for such a time as this.


Drew Oller

Ministry Apprentice



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